Moncton residents worry about surplus military homes
People express concerns selling homes as a block would flood market and reduce their property values
More than 100 people packed a public meeting in Moncton on Tuesday night to discuss what will happen to 74 single and semi-detached homes in their west-end neighbourhood of Acadia Park.
The military has declared the homes surplus and Public Works and Government Services Canada is in the process of getting rid of the homes.
Sandra Forbes, who grew up in the neighbourhood and whose parents still live there, said people in Acadia Park have a lot of questions.
"They could never tell us which department was interested and so we just want to know what's going on, who's coming to the neighbourhood is it going to financially affect my parents, is it emotionally going to affect my parents?" she said.
A representative from the federal government told the crowd that federal, provincial and municipal governments have all expressed interest in the properties and they now have until Aug. 25 to submit formal proposals.
Discussion at the public meeting was often heated.
Ron Bordage, a local resident, said his life savings are tied up in his home and he's concerned about which government departments might be interested in the military housing.
"Corrections Canada could put a bid on these houses, N.B. Housing could show an interest and that would affect the value of my house," Bordage said.
Residents, including Bordage, say they're worried the 74 homes will be sold as a block, which would flood an already saturated real estate market.
"My house, which is an upper value house, the value of it has stagnated because of this market reality and it couldn't be worse timing for them to announce they're going to put this on the market."
Bordage said with no pension, he has put a lot of work into his home and is counting on it for his retirement.
"The amount of hours, as a tradesman, I had to put in to achieve what I have today and that's threatened," he said.
Residents want another meeting
Bordage said he also worries a decision will be made by the federal government and residents will be left in the dark about what's going to happen with no opportunity for input.
The residents are hoping for another public meeting with the federal government before any deal is signed.
Moncton Coun. Charles Leger, who also lives in the west end. said people deserve to know what's coming.
"No federal department, no provincial department would want to go into a neighbourhood and be unwanted," Leger said.
"I think that's what the neighbours collectively in this room were saying is, 'We're not against different ideas, we just want to be part of this because it's such a large number of homes all at once in a neighbourhood that's already established,'" Leger said.